First off, I’d like to start this review by welcoming Danny DeVito into the Five-Timers Club. I’m not fully sure why they didn’t make a bigger deal over this accomplishment but maybe it’s because his second hosting appearance was a dual spot with his wife. Either that or this was just at a time when Tom Hanks’s entry was just a joke and not a genuinely celebrated event.
Either way, as I pointed out in past reviews, I’m a huge fan of DeVito’s work and couldn’t wait to see what he had for us tonight. Once again, this being the season that it is, the episode ended up a mixed bag where I loved his high enthusiastic energy enough to not mind the mediocre content.
Not only did I like Danny’s high energy but I also loved how this was another show with the shorter but more sketch format to where even if a sketch was a bit of a bore we were in and out before it got too noticeable. This was especially helpful this week because it felt like over half of the sketches were devoted to Amy Fisher and the Buttafuoco clan.
If I wasn’t alive at this time, I would have hated tonight’s show because of just how Buttafuoco focused they were but living through the story at the time the story was so big, which I think was mainly due to the silly sounding Buttafuoco name, that I know that there was no way that a comedy show could possibly avoid topic.
So, since I was alive, I was only partially annoyed by the repetitive jokes that I’m sure I found funny at the time because, come on, Buttafuoco, how could you help but laugh when you’re a sixteen-year-old offensive comedy fan. And again, I’m still talking only partial annoyance because the way the spread the Amy Fisher jokes throughout the night was actually pretty funny and it would have been worse if they consolidated them all into one long-winded sketch.
With that said, I don’t think I actually mind the running Amy Fisher joke because it was actually ingenious how they shared the same story through different genres while making fun of different cable networks and their very specific audiences.
Either way, this was another good but not great episode like the rest of the rest of the season only a bit closer to being great that I would love to see more of as the rest of the season plays out. Oh well, we’ll see what happens but until then, it’s now time to shift gears and share what I saw as I give you…
The Wicker Breakdown:
- This week's show started with the George Wendt and the Super Fans sharing an Open Letter To The Bears where they complained about the firing of Mike Ditka and threatened to boycott the team by returning all of their unused season tickets and memorabilia to show their disdain for the team now that their God of a coach is gone. The sketch ended with Ditka receiving the letter before announcing, “Live from New York…”
- Danny DeVito then officially opened the show dressed as a hobo clown to perform a song called I’ll do anything for a laugh with Rob Schneider to bring in the New Year’s and second half of the season which I hope is as energetic as this opening because this season could really use a boost in that department.
- We then got a rerun of the Canis sketch from earlier in the season which was a parody of a Calvin Klein ad campaign only this was promoting a cologne for dogs.
- Aaron Spelling's Amy Fisher, 10516 was a parody of 90210 only using the Amy Fisher, Joey and Mary Joe Buttafuoco crime case as the backdrop for all of the comedic drama. This sketch also made fun of the fact that all the other TV networks already aired an Amy Fisher story and how this FOX version was going to be the one to out-do them all.
- Simon then returned for the first time in forever where this week, the bathtub secluded son of a British Businessman had a bath mate in Danny DeVito, whose dad is a mob boss who travels. The two shared their limited views of the world through drawings from hotel windows around the world highlighting this week’s Vegas stay.
- Masterpiece Theatre also returned for another installment after being gone for a while. This time Jan Hooks sat in as a special host to introduce a stage play version of The House Of Buttafuoco which again parodied the Amy Fisher ordeal.
- Shifty Eyes was a sketch where Danny DeVito met up with Julia Sweeney and Adam Sandler for a dinner get together with friends. During the group’s conversation whenever anyone made a complaint or shared a suspicious detail someone at the table would get shifty eyes as if they were hiding their guilt, even in cases where it was impossible for that guilt to be true.
- This was followed by another Deep Thoughts By Jack Handey where Jack pondered how he would trick a spirit back into its body if he were a doctor who had a patient die on him during surgery.
- Amy Fisher: One Messed-Up Bitch was a parody of BET’s version of the Amy Fisher fiasco.
- Bon Jovi then took to the stage to perform Bed Of Roses.
- Once again, Kevin Nealon gave us the news. This week, “Jan Brady” dropped in to discuss why she thinks that the movie Leprechaun should be the best movie of the year being that it was the New Year’s episode and Leprechaun was the only major release so far because she took her assignment too literal.
- Gap Girls then made its show debut where Adam Sandler and David Spade played girls who work at the Gap and gossiped their shift away while refold tried on clothes. During the sketch one of the Delta Delta Delta girls dropped in which was interesting because other than the location change and the fact that the guys were playing girls this was almost the same sketch making fun of young girls and youth culture.
- Sex On Tape was a sketch that took place in a recording studio for the recording of the audiobook for Madonna controversial book entitled Sex. To add to the fun they have Charlton Heston doing narration and Al Goldstein describing the photos.
- Unbelievable New Breakthroughs was a sketch that showed the infomercial’s take on the Amy Fisher ordeal with Danny DeVito playing a pitchman who covers Mary Jo Buttafuoco’s bald spot from the bullet with his magical spay on hair.
- Secret Hitman was a sketch where Danny DeVito played a secret hitman who was horrible at hiding his job from his wife.
- Bon Jovi then returned to the stage to perform Wanted Dead Or Alive.
- Adults Still Living With Their Parents was a support group sketch with Julia Sweeney as the moderator of a meeting with men who still live at home with their parents. Where most of the men seem ashamed by this Danny DeVito is proud of the fact that he’s going to mooch off his folks until the very end.
- Finally, Danny DeVito closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.
It’s interesting how just yesterday I pointed out that it was the first time that I struggled to come up with my top three list because everything was just okay with a pretty good overall show, only to have a repeat of this issue again right away today but here’s what I managed to come up with. First, I loved the Adults Still Living With Their Parents support group sketch because these are my people they are making fun of, only I moved out for over a couple decades before having to return home to regroup. Next, I really liked Unbelievable New Breakthroughs because I thought it was brilliant how they connected an infomercial into the Buttafuocopalooza theme of the night plus I also tried spray-on hair and was impressed that it actually works. Finally, I was a fan of the Shifty Eyes sketch because I just find the eye shift reaction to guilt.